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Texas Congressmen Warn Of Chinese Spies At State Universities

Fred Burton, a former counterintelligence agent, said Confucius Institute might have been used to spread China’s political agenda and steal academic research

Intelligence experts echo concerns of Texas congressmen about the state’s universities hosting a group they say serves as an intelligence collective for the Chinese government.

Intelligence experts echo concerns of Texas congressmen about the state’s universities hosting a group they say serves as an intelligence collective for the Chinese government.

Fred Burton, a former counterintelligence agent with the private intelligence firm Stratfor, said the Chinese government set up the Confucius Institute to promote Chinese language and culture on college campuses. But, he said, the Institute might also have been used to spread China’s political agenda and steal academic research.

“Using academic cover is a tried and true method that the Chinese like to utilize as an effort to identify potential targets they could recruit for espionage on foreign soil,” Burton said.

In February, FBI Director Christopher Wray testified before the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence that the FBI was investigating the Confucius Institute.

In its letter to several universities, including the University of Texas at San Antonio, congressmen Michael McCaul and Henry Cuellar urged them to end their relationships with the Confucius Institute.

Read the Confucius Institute letter to Texas colleges, universities, and other educational institutions:

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